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At home orin a home?Formal care and adoption of childrenin Eastern Europe and Central Asiaunite forchildren
At home orin a home?Formal care and adoption of childrenin Eastern Europe and Central AsiaUNICEF Regional Office for Centr...
© The United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF), September 2010Front cover photo:UNICEF/MD07/00152/PIROZZICazanesti boarding...
ContentsAcknowledgements                                                                                  1Foreword       ...
AT h O M E O R I N A h O M E ?
AcknowledgementsThis report is based on data provided by national statistical offices from twenty countries in Central and...
Foreword                    A ‘home’ is not just a place to live. For children, being at ‘home’ usually means living with ...
Despite the governments’ engagement in reforms and positive GDP growth in the same period, the rate atwhich children are s...
Executive Summary                    The report At Home or in a Home? describes the divide separating children with hope a...
A unique source of international dataThe report puts data on children in formal care under the microscope. It provides an ...
the rate of children in institutional care increased between 2000 and 2007, while in 8 countries it                       ...
Conclusions:   •	   A lack of support to families in need and early identification and timely interventions contribute to ...
1. Introduction                    The report provides an overview of the major trends and concerns about formal          ...
progress of the reforms. For example, in several countries it has been found that many children counted as‘institutionaliz...
2. Aim, methodology and caveats                     This report aims to provide answers to the following questions: What a...
In summary, we know that the MONEE data have limitations. However, acknowledging this, and combiningthe data with other so...
3. More children are becoming                         separated from their families                     Government authori...
Table 3.1             Age distribution of children officially registered as left without parental care during             ...
4. The rate of children in formal care                         is increasing                     Formal care refers to all...
Figure 4.2                                               Stock data: Rate of children in formal care in selected countries...
Table 4.1             Flow data: Placement of children without parental care whose parents have been                      ...
5. Poverty is not the only cause of   separation, but an important oneGross Domestic Product (GDP) is one of the main indi...
Depending on national legislation, a court usually takes children away from their parents as a last resort,               ...
Box 5.1 Residential care: what is it?     “I like the room here at the institution, but I like my home better. I go home o...
6. The hidden increase of residential                             care in most countries                     The term ‘res...
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At home or in a home?

  1. 1. At home orin a home?Formal care and adoption of childrenin Eastern Europe and Central Asiaunite forchildren
  2. 2. At home orin a home?Formal care and adoption of childrenin Eastern Europe and Central AsiaUNICEF Regional Office for Central andEastern Europe and the Commonwealth ofIndependent States (CEE/CIS)September 2010unite forchildren
  3. 3. © The United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF), September 2010Front cover photo:UNICEF/MD07/00152/PIROZZICazanesti boarding school, Moldova.Design: paprika-annecy.com
  4. 4. ContentsAcknowledgements 1Foreword 2Executive Summary 4 1. Introduction 8 2. Aim, methodology and caveats 10 3. More children are becoming separated from their families 12 4. The rate of children in formal care is increasing 14 5. Poverty is not the only cause of separation, but an important one 17 6. The hidden increase of residential care in most countries 20 7. Institutionalization of infants and young children is still too common 24 8. Children with disabilities represent a large proportion of all children in residential care 27 9. Concerns regarding the role of some non-state actors in the development of residential care 3010. Patterns of out-flow from residential care raise important questions about gatekeeping 3211. The development of family-based alternative care has been slow 3412. Adoption is an option, but only for some 3813. Conclusions 4414. Recommendations 46References 50Appendix 1 Glossary of terms 52Appendix 2 Value and limitations of MONEE 54Appendix 3 Statistical tables 56
  5. 5. AT h O M E O R I N A h O M E ?
  6. 6. AcknowledgementsThis report is based on data provided by national statistical offices from twenty countries in Central andEastern Europe and the Commonwealth of Independent States (CEE/CIS), collected through the UNICEFregional monitoring project, MONEE, and also using research undertaken in the region.It has been a collaborative effort. The first draft was produced by Helen Moestue, Child Protection Specialistat the UNICEF Regional Office for CEE/CIS. Special thanks go to Virginija Cruijsen, statistical expert whocontributed substantially to analysis and data checking. Important inputs are acknowledged from Jean-Claude Legrand, Regional Advisor on Child Protection, and Anna Nordenmark Severinsson and SévérineJacomy Vité, Child Protection Specialists at the UNICEF Regional Office for CEE/CIS who reviewed andcommented on the drafts. Comments have also been gratefully received from a broad reference group,including Hervé Boéchat (ISS – International Social Service), Nigel Cantwell and Vesna Bosnjak (independentconsultants), Deepa Grover (UNICEF CEE/CIS), Leonardo Menchini (UNICEF Innocenti Research Centre),Furkat Lutfulloev (UNICEF Tajikistan) and Chris Rayment (EveryChild). 1...
  7. 7. Foreword A ‘home’ is not just a place to live. For children, being at ‘home’ usually means living with their family in an environment that fosters a sense of belonging, identity and origin. Home is a place where they can feel cared for, and grow up protected from neglect, abuse and violence. However, many children do not have a home in this sense and are brought up in an environment that is far from the ideal family one. The UN Convention on the Rights of the Child (CRC) recognises the importance of a family upbringing for all children. In 2009, the Convention celebrated its 20th anniversary, and the UN General Assembly adopted the UN Guidelines for the Alternative Care of Children. Such guidelines are much needed to help governments in their efforts to build child protection systems that effectively protect children in a family environment. This report is about children in Eastern Europe and Central Asia who are deprived of parental care. Despite recent reforms, which have led to an increase in the number of children being placed in alternative families – for example with foster parents, guardians or adoptive parents – the majority of these children are still living in institutions. They live in a child care system which relies heavily on costly residential care and which also undermines their development potential. The report provides an in-depth review and analysis of the latest statistics provided by national statistical offices on children in formal care in these countries. It highlights relevant trends on key issues such as family separation, the placement of children in institutional care and concerns about the abandoning or handing over of small babies to state authorities. Finally, it looks at the heavy reliance on institutions to care for children with disabilities – many people are still under the misapprehension that an institution is the best place for a disabled child. The findings of this report show that there has been impressive progress over the past ten years in the reform of the child care systems in Eastern Europe and Central Asia. They have adjusted their legislation to bring themselves into line with international conventions and other human rights treaties and diversified services for families and children: all countries are introducing family-based alternatives to residential care and several of them are experimenting with transforming old residential care services. These countries have made important changes in the way the services are targeted to families and children. They are developing standards, accreditation and licensing for new services and developing new gatekeeping practices that better control the criteria by which children are placed in institutions. Innovative practices have been introduced on financing and budgeting for child care services. These redirect resources from old residential care institutions to family and child support services, and family-based care. However, these countries have also faced problems implementing plans and new legislation. This is mainly because national plans do not systematically define quantitative targets and fail to fully consider, enforce, or adequately monitor some qualitative issues. Governments must renew their efforts and enlist the support of regional and international partners in particular areas....2 AT h O M E O R I N A h O M E ?
  8. 8. Despite the governments’ engagement in reforms and positive GDP growth in the same period, the rate atwhich children are separated from their families has continued to increase. In 2007 throughout the 20 countries ,considered by the TransMONEE project, approximately 1.3 million children in this region lived in various types ofalternative care arrangements, separated from their families. More than 600,000 of them grew up in residentialcare in hundreds of institutions. This situation needs addressing immediately.Based on the findings of this report, we renew our call for a shift towards preventing children from being separatedfrom their family environment in the first place. Although we can be satisfied that family-based approaches havegained ground, this report demonstrates that preventative work must be intensified. It also shows us thatresidential care must be much better managed, so that when staying in an institution really is necessary, it isan exceptional, temporary solution in a system that is properly geared towards family reintegration or longer-term and stable family-based resolution. The aim is to give every child a proper home and a sense of belonging,identity and origin. This can be achieved not only by using cash assistance for the most vulnerable families, butalso by developing family support services, which provide improved access to health services and education. Thesuccess of governments in leading such complex reforms will depend on their capacity to coordinate differentactors, both private and public, national and international, and also central, regional and municipal level authorities.It will also rely on their ability to identify and find funds to cover the transitional costs for these reforms.This report demonstrates that in Eastern Europe and Central Asia fundamental reforms to the child care systemsare still urgently needed to ensure they effectively support families and children and provide cost-efficientalternatives to residential care. As the region is suffering the severe impact of the current economic crisis, it iscrucial to keep the momentum for achieving such reforms. Steven Allen Regional Director UNICEF Regional Office for CEE/CIS 3...
  9. 9. Executive Summary The report At Home or in a Home? describes the divide separating children with hope and love, and those who never feel love, just the rigid hand of an indifferent bureaucracy – the institution. While the report does document failures, a failure to conduct reforms to term and thus to bring effective change to those children’s lives, a failure to change public attitudes and most of all a failure to embrace some of the most vulnerable children and families in our society, there are glimmers of hope and there are possibilities – a way out of this bureaucratic morass, and one which embraces the family or the family environment as the core of the reform of the child care system. The number of children in residential care in the region is extraordinary – the highest in the world. More than 626,000 children reside in these institutions in the 22 countries or entities that make up Central and Eastern Europe and the Commonwealth of Independent States, CEE/CIS. While there have been real changes in this system, what this report shows is just how difficult reform turned out to be and how slow and uneven progress has been, as media images of appalling conditions in some residential care institutions portray. To be fair there are many committed staff who really care about the children. But this is not enough, because of the institution in itself – the way it is organized and the way it reduces a child to a number. It can never be what a family is and give those children the family love they so crave. The report reveals how much the Soviet legacy system continues to dominate the child care system with its tradition of placing children who were abused and neglected or those with disabilities into institutions. In the early 1990s, during the transition from the Soviet period, another factor came into play. Confronted with a severe deterioration of living standards many families placed children into institutions as a way of lightening the financial burden on the family in the face of poverty. Now the global economic crisis is creating further economic vulnerability for millions of families and is likely to also impact on the rates of children going into formal care. Most disturbingly the institutionalization of children with disabilities continues as a stable trend, untouched by any reform. In many countries, children with disabilities represent as many as 60 per cent of all children in institutions. For UNICEF, this is an indication of the failure of systems to provide tailored responses to families who have children with disabilities and to children with disabilities themselves. Supporting the reform of child care systems has been a priority for UNICEF in Eastern Europe and Central Asia for the last 20 years. Most recently we have organized, in partnership with governments, four high- level consultations on child care reform, with the aim of taking stock of where reforms stand and to support governments in the acceleration of their reforms. Reform has been a partial success. Every country in the CEE/CIS region is – to a varying extent, and with different levels of success – engaged in the reform of the child care system. The vision for reform of the child care system articulates the importance of family based care and de-institutionalization. It recognizes that the reform needs to develop family and child support services to prevent institutionalization, services which were almost non-existent in the past. Statutory services with gatekeeping functions making decisions about services and placements of children must also be reformed. However the reform process has been slow and any progress that has been made is still fragile. The reforms are often not deep enough to have an impact. It is hard to escape the fact that CEE/CIS countries remain reliant on residential care as the default response to risks and vulnerabilities. The Committee on the Rights of the Child has expressed serious concerns about this situation....4 AT h O M E O R I N A h O M E ?
  10. 10. A unique source of international dataThe report puts data on children in formal care under the microscope. It provides an overview of the majortrends and concerns about formal care and adoption in CEE/CIS. It aims to provide answers to the followingquestions: What are the broad trends in rates of children in formal, residential and family-based care? Arethere significant differences between countries or sub-regions? Are there particular sub-groups of childrenwe should be concerned about? The picture provided by the analysis will help to measure the impact of thechild care system reform and drive new recommendations to end the dependence on residential care.Data presented in the report are official government statistics spanning the years 1989 to 2007. They wereobtained through the MONEE project, including special analytical country reports submitted by 13 countriesin 2006.MONEE is a unique source of international data on key child protection indicators. To interpret the statisticsmeaningfully, however, one needs to appreciate the differences between countries in legal frameworks,systems and definitions. One also needs to acknowledge the concerns about data quality. Nevertheless,by comparing the results with other sources of data, we have been able to identify major trends and keyconcerns. MONEE offers an unparalleled opportunity to examine historical trends spanning three decades.Key findings of the analysis:The findings of the analysis of MONEE data reveal that, in spite of reform efforts: 1. More children are becoming separated from their families: For all the 10 countries with comprehensive data there is a clear trend showing that every year, more children are separated from their families than in previous years. No country shows a decreasing trend. This is an important indicator of family vulnerability as it shows that families are increasingly using formal care services for their children. 2. The rate of children in formal care is increasing: Formal care refers to all children in residential care or family-based care. The data analysed confirms that despite reforms to the child care systems that have begun in all the countries in the region, there has been no significant reduction in the use of formal care services. On average, the number of children living in formal care in the region in 2007 was 1,738 per 100,000, up from 1,503 per 100,000 in 2000. 3. Poverty is not the only cause of separation, but an important one: Family poverty is often quoted as a key factor in a family’s decision to place their children into formal care. Single parenthood, migration, deprivation of parental rights, disability of the child are other factors which are often mentioned as causes. But behind these terms hide many different realities which often melt down to a general lack of access to free-of-charge social services. Often families are simply seeking day-care facilities to be able to work, or educational facilities in the localities where they live. When they find such services unavailable, or inaccessible, they resort to boarding schools or institutions instead. 4. The hidden increase of residential care in most countries: An analysis of trends suggests that the total number of children in residential care in CEE/CIS has fallen between 2000 and 2007, from 757,000 to 626,000 children. However, as the birth rate in the region has also dropped dramatically, the numbers are less encouraging than they may seem. A more appropriate and realistic picture is presented with the use of ‘rates,’ accounting for the impact of demographic change. The rate of children in institutional care in CEE/CIS has on average been almost stagnant since 2000, following a longer-term upward trend since the early 1990s. We estimate that 859 children per 100,000 were living in residential care in 2007, which is about the same as the 2000 rate (861). The regional averages hide important differences between countries. A closer look reveals that in 12 countries 5...
  11. 11. the rate of children in institutional care increased between 2000 and 2007, while in 8 countries it decreased. This means that despite ongoing reforms, residential care is becoming more frequent in more than half the countries. 5. Institutionalization of infants and young children is still too common: The institutionalization of infants is a serious concern because of the damaging effect it has on the young child’s health and development. Across the region, the loaded term ‘abandonment’ is often used to describe the reason these babies are in residential care. However, hidden behind many of the cases of ‘abandonment’ are stories of mothers or parents whose decision to hand over their children was taken because they lacked support or advice. Sometimes they were even encouraged by the hospital staff to do so. Data analysed in this report show that in 2007, institutionalization rates of infants and young children were particularly high in 8 countries. 6. Children with disabilities represent a large proportion of all children in residential care: According to data from 2007, more than one third of all children in residential care are classified as having a ‘disability’. The number of children with disabilities in residential care has remained remarkably stable over the past 15 years, suggesting that little has been done to provide non- residential alternatives for them. Although there are differences in the diagnosis and classification of mental or physical disabilities between countries, as well as differences in the methodologies used for collecting statistics on disability, figures indicate that at least 230,000 children with disabilities or classified as such, were living in institutional care in CEE/CIS in 2007. This is equivalent to 315 per 100,000 children. 7. There are concerns regarding the role of some non-state actors in the development of residential care: Many NGOs are making positive contributions to the reform of the child care system. Often they have taken the lead in developing pilot family-like care and community services. At the same time some non-state actors are actually stepping up their role in the provision of residential care. Although these institutions are often described as ‘family-like’, there are no indications that governments are coordinating these efforts within a nationwide process of transformation of the old, larger residential care facilities. There is also a general lack of nationally approved standards for such services, which would regulate public and private service providers alike. 8. Patterns of out-flow of children from residential care raise important questions about gate-keeping: Children are recorded as leaving institutions either because they have turned 18 years of age and enter the community as an independent adult, are reunited with their biological family, are adopted or benefit from family-based alternative care. However, some are transferred from one institution to another, and often these transfers are not registered in the statistics, thereby overestimating the true number of ‘leavers’. There are large variations between countries, but overall there is a concern that large proportions of children are entering or leaving institutions without such moves being made in the best interest of these children. 9. The development of family based alternative care has been slow: While alternative family- based care is expanding, residential care is not diminishing. The number of children living in family- based care in CEE/CIS has gone up from 43 per cent of all children in formal care in 2000, to 51 per cent of all children in formal care in 2007. In 11 countries the rate of children in institutional care actually also increased between 2000 and 2007, compared with only 6 countries in which it decreased. This means that in the majority of countries residential care is also resorted to more often, even if the regional average remains stagnant (859 children per 100,000 in 2007). 10. Adoption is an option but only for some: In 2007, 28,000 children were adopted in CEE/CIS, of which about 75 per cent were adopted within their own country (domestic adoption) and the remaining 25 per cent were adopted abroad (intercountry adoption). The findings suggest that additional efforts are required to establish transparent procedures for domestic adoption and to incorporate it within national social policies (child benefits), as is currently done in the Russian Federation....6 AT h O M E O R I N A h O M E ?
  12. 12. Conclusions: • A lack of support to families in need and early identification and timely interventions contribute to children being relinquished or handed over by their parents and placed in formal care for short or protracted periods of their lives. Poverty may be a contributory factor, but it is not necessarily the main underlying cause. • Of all types of formal care, residential care is still the main option and receives the support of traditional administrative and financial systems and legislation. While family-based care is growing, it is not necessarily doing so by replacing residential care. • Gate-keeping of the system is currently extremely weak or completely failing in many countries. This means that many children enter the system for the wrong reasons and their chances of leaving are slim. Efficient gate-keeping requires a streamlining of methods for assessment and decision- making and clarification of mandates by a limited number of qualified statutory agencies responsible for individual case assessment, decision-making, referral to appropriate services and regular review of cases. • Use of the term ‘abandonment’ when talking about institutionalizing children tends to imply that these children have been completely deserted by their family and have little or no hope of being reunited with their parents. While this is sometimes the case, often it is not. There is anecdotal evidence from other countries in the region that a lack of identity papers, for example, coupled with active encouragement by staff to leave the child behind, leads many mothers to feel they have no choice but to ‘hand over’ the child to temporary or long-term care of somebody else in the belief that it is in the child’s best interest. • The tendency towards institutionalization of children with disabilities continues and is an indicator of the wider social exclusion these children face. The medical and deficiency-oriented model of assessment and treatment of these children still prevails. Differences between sub-regions and countries are difficult to interpret, but may reflect differences in the traditional role of family networks versus formal care. They may reflect differences not only in the quality and levels of perinatal care for premature children or for children with disabilities, but also in support services for families who have children with special needs. They may also reflect variations in methods of data collection and disability diagnosis. • Domestic adoption remains to be developed. In the handful of countries where domestic adoption has in the past been relatively common, rates have been declining in recent years. Indeed, adoption may be an appropriate measure for some children to benefit from a permanent family environment. However, the relative number of intercountry adoptions practised in some countries vis-à-vis domestic adoptions is a matter of concern. Further research is also needed to understand the underlying dynamics of adoption within child protection reform. 7...
  13. 13. 1. Introduction The report provides an overview of the major trends and concerns about formal care and adoption in Eastern Europe and Central Asia. Data presented are official government statistics collected through UNICEF’s MONEE research project via national statistical offices throughout the region. Countries in CEE/CIS have traditionally relied heavily on placing into institutions children who are abused and neglected, and those with disabilities. In the early 1990s, when CEE/CIS countries started the process of transition, economic conditions deteriorated for many families. At that time, the placing of children in institutions was seen as a strategy to mitigate family poverty. The break-up of 8 states into 27 almost overnight contributed to a massive movement of people within and from the region. While migration became a common way of coping for families, it also exposed children to new risks and placed an additional burden on the systems in place which support those children without parental care. At the same time, the transition opened up space for new ideas and approaches to child protection and countries started recognising the importance of children growing up in a family environment. By the year 2000, all countries in the region had initiated reforms to build comprehensive child care systems. It was also in that year, at the conference ‘Children deprived of parental care: Rights and Realities in the CEE/CIS Region’, organised by UNICEF and the World Bank, that the governments in CEE/CIS articulated a joint vision for reform, and officially recognised the importance of family-based care and de-institutionalization of child care. Since 2000, a clearer understanding of precisely what needs to be reformed has evolved. This understanding resulted from sometimes painful experiences caused by rapid efforts at de-institutionalization in situations where no alternative services were in place. It is now appreciated that closing institutions without providing a follow-up service for the children is unacceptable. Now, focus is placed on developing family and child support services to prevent institutionalization and on offering support to children who are leaving institutions; for example ensuring family-based placements, which consider the child’s origin. It is appreciated that the statutory organs with gate-keeping functions that decide on which children should be placed in institutional care, or which children are ready to leave, must be reformed. This must be combined with the introduction of modern social work practices, and development of alternative family support and family-based care. Today, the reform process is ongoing. Every country in the CEE/CIS region is – to a varying extent, and with different levels of success – engaged in the reform of the child care system. Lessons learned show that reform takes time and most countries are still struggling with the high, if not increasing numbers of children going into the formal care system.1 Despite the fact that, of these children, a larger proportion than ever is benefiting from family-based care services, such as foster and guardianship care, global estimates show that the CEE/CIS region still has the highest rate of children in residential care in the world (Figure 1.1). While formal child care systems are being reformed and transformed throughout the region, the process has been slow and any progress that has been made is still fragile. Experts warn that the 2008 onset of the global economic crisis is likely to have had a significant impact on the rates of children going into formal care. With families becoming more vulnerable, child care systems need to be stronger than ever. As yet, however, this is not the case. The new services which have been introduced have uneven coverage and many remain in a pilot stage. This is mainly the result of budgeting procedures. Institutional placements are still financed from stable budgetary sources while alternative services remain unfunded or depend on local sources. Even when new services are being funded, they often serve only the newcomers in the system. Thus, institutionalized children and children who could be diverted from institutional care (with adequate, and sometimes many, forms of family and child support), are not yet considered as priorities for new services. Ongoing data collection in the area of child care is needed to evaluate the impact of the crisis and the benefits of public investments in children’s wellbeing in CEE/CIS. This report has also revealed a need to improve the collection of data and to have better indicators for decision-makers so that they can better monitor the 1 Formal care is defined as any type (public or private) of residential care or alternative family-based care for children who are without parental care (such as for example foster and guardianship care) on a permanent or temporary basis. The definition does not include day care services....8 AT h O M E O R I N A h O M E ?
  14. 14. progress of the reforms. For example, in several countries it has been found that many children counted as‘institutionalized’ attend institutions but not on a full-time basis (they go home at the weekends or in theevenings). This is important information to guide policies on child protection. Regulation of open servicesneeds to be put in place and poor families should be offered day care services or free schooling (includinginclusive education for children with disabilities) in order that this kind of state support may prevent theplacement of children in institutions.This report has been produced in response to a call for evidence in favour of efforts to reform the childcare system. It provides an overview of general trends of child care in recent years as well as providinga snapshot of the present situation. As such, it invites further dialogue with policy makers on the mosturgent priorities for the reform of child care systems in CEE/CIS to overcome the legacy that residential careinstitutions have left in the region, and to develop a modern child protection system that genuinely servesthe best interests of children.Figure 1.1 Global estimates of children in institutional care: by region 2 Middle East and North Africa 10% CCE / CIS 42% OECD 22% South and East Asia 22% Latin America 10% Eastern and Southern Africa 7%2 Estimates are based on a UNICEF analysis of several main sources, including national estimates, often from governments, provided by UNICEF country offices (2005 and 2006); country reports prepared for the ‘Second International Conference on Children and Residential Care: New Strategies for a New Millenium’, held in Stockholm in 2003; and the TransMONEE database of CEE/CIS indicators (2003). The estimates represent the number of children in institutional care at any moment. Numbers in the Latin American and the Caribbean, Middle East and North Africa, Eastern and Southern Africa and East Asia and Pacific regions are likely to be highly underestimated due to the lack of registration of institutional care facilities. No estimates were calculated for West and Central Africa due to a lack of data for this region. 9...
  15. 15. 2. Aim, methodology and caveats This report aims to provide answers to the following questions: What are the broad trends in rates of children in formal, residential and family-based care? Are there significant differences between different countries or sub-regions? Are there particular sub-groups of children we should be concerned about? The picture provided by the analysis will help to measure the impact of the child care system reform and drive new recommendations for informed reforms. Government data spanning the years 1989 to 2007 were obtained through the MONEE project 3, including special analytical country reports submitted by 13 countries 4 in 2006 and data from the TransMONEE database that were available for these countries and another seven. 5 In total, data from 20 countries were thus available for analysis (Box 2.1). Key definitions of terms are provided in Box 2.2. MONEE is a unique source of international data on key child protection indicators. To interpret the statistics Box 2.1 CEE/CIS sub-regions and countries included in this report meaningfully, however, one needs to appreciate the differences between countries in legal frameworks, South Eastern Bulgaria systems and definitions. One also needs to acknowledge Europe Romania Albania the concerns about data quality. In the majority of countries, Bosnia and Herzegovina responsibilities for data collection are divided between Croatia different ministries or other official bodies, each using Montenegro different methods and definitions and making it difficult to Serbia* TFYR Macedonia come up with national standardised estimates. In addition, Western CIS Belarus there is a general absence of internal consistency checks Moldova and external evaluations. Sometimes the data collected Russian Federation are not nationally representative. There are also similar Ukraine Caucasus Armenia concerns about the population data used to calculate Azerbaijan rates. Georgia Central Asia Kazakhstan Despite these concerns, MONEE offers an unparalleled Kyrgyzstan opportunity to examine historical trends spanning three Tajikistan Turkmenistan decades and allows for forecasts. Moreover, MONEE has Uzbekistan in recent years started to collect ‘flow’ data which monitor * It should be noted that throughout the report, data for the movement of children in, out of and within the system. Serbia do not include Kosovo. This is of tremendous value to policy makers wanting to know the impact of changes in policy (Box 2.3). MONEE data may produce inaccurate estimates of the true number of children in formal care. On the one hand, numbers may be inflated in countries where it is common for ‘young adults’ to remain in institutions after their 18th birthday. This is often the case of children with a disability or if the child has nowhere to go. While MONEE collects some data on the number of over-18s, the data are not available for all countries. On the other hand, MONEE may under-estimate the true extent of formal care because it misses children placed in institutions for shorter periods or those placed in private institutions that are not monitored. This is important because we know that even short stays may have negative impacts on children. In the case of infants, for example, they may be abandoned in maternity wards or centres for street children. Such facilities are not included in the official count because they are not considered to be ‘residential institutions’. 3 The MONEE project: Since 1992, the UNICEF Innocenti Research Centre has been gathering and sharing data on the situation of children and women in countries of Central and Eastern Europe, the Commonwealth of Independent States and the Baltic States. The TransMONEE database, which contains a wealth of statistical information covering the period 1989 to the present on social and economic issues relevant to the welfare of children, young people and women is published annually and is available electronically at http://unicef-icdc.org/resources/transmonee.html 4 Albania, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Kyrgyzstan, TFYR Macedonia, Moldova, Romania, the Russian Federation, Tajikistan, Uzbekistan 5 Croatia, Georgia, Kazakhstan, aggregated data for Serbia and Montenegro pre-cession, Turkmenistan, Ukraine....10 AT h O M E O R I N A h O M E ?
  16. 16. In summary, we know that the MONEE data have limitations. However, acknowledging this, and combiningthe data with other sources of information has allowed us nonetheless to identify major trends and keyproblems in formal care and adoption in the region. Box 2.2 Key definitions 6 Children without parental care: All children not living with at least one of their parents, for whatever reason and under whatever circumstances. With respect to its juridical nature, alternative care may be: • Informal care : any private arrangement provided in a family environment, whereby the child is looked after on an ongoing or indefinite basis by relatives or friends (informal kinship care) or by others in their individual capacity, at the initiative of the child, his/her parents or other person without this arrangement having been ordered by an administrative or judicial authority or a duly accredited body. • Formal care or alternative care: all care provided in a family environment or in a residential institution which has been ordered or authorised by a competent administrative body or judicial authority, including in public and private facilities, whether or not as a result of administrative or judicial measures. With respect to the environment where it is provided, alternative care may be: • Residential care : care provided in any non-family-based group setting, in facilities housing large or small numbers of children. • Foster care : children in foster care are in formal care in the legal sense, but placed with families rather than in institutions. Foster parents normally receive a special fee and an allowance. • Guardianship is a care arrangement for underage children (often under 14 years old) and legally recognised disabled persons. Guardians appointed by a guardianship and trusteeship agency are legal representatives of persons under their care, and they perform all legally significant acts on their behalf and in their interests. In many countries, an allowance is foreseen for guardians, who are often but not always, relatives (e.g. grandparents); however this is not always paid in practice. Box 2.3 The flows and stocks model The concepts of ‘flows’ and ‘stocks’ are increasingly being used to evaluate the demand for child care services. Measuring the annual inflow of children into the formal care system may help local or national authorities determine whether programmes aimed at preventing separation are having an impact. Similarly, measuring the outflow of children from residential care to family-based care would also allow for an evaluation of child care policies promoting foster care, guardianship care and adoption. An example from Romania illustrates the value of examining both stocks and flows as a way of monitoring. Researchers developed a ‘flow model’ of the situation of children in care in the late 1990s to show that, while the number of children in institutions may appear relatively stagnant, the dynamics behind these numbers – the flow in and out and within the system – were not. They revealed that many more children are involved in the formal child care system than were previously thought, but these children are not captured in official statistics 7. Use of the flow-model also showed that at the end of the 1990s in Romania 7.5 per cent of all children had at some point in their life been in touch with the formal care system, while the proportion was only 2 per cent at any one time.6 Synthetic definitions based on UN Guidelines for the Alternative Care of Children, UNGA: A/RES/64/142, 24 February 2010.7 Westhof , ‘Flow model [of] institutionalised children in Romania and the determining variables’, UNICEF June 2001. , 11...
  17. 17. 3. More children are becoming separated from their families Government authorities identify and maintain a list of children without parental care. Based on specific conditions that have caused the children to be separated from their parents they also choose the type of state care best suited to them. MONEE collects data on the number of children officially classed as becoming ‘without parental care’ during the year (flow data). Of the 10 countries for which we have comprehensive trend data, the Russian Federation, Ukraine, Moldova, TFYR Macedonia and Turkmenistan show a clear increase of children without parental care over time, while no country shows a declining rate (Figure 3.1). It is a cause for concern that the first three countries already had high rates of children without parental care. In terms of absolute numbers we see an increase of 11 per cent between 2000 and 2007 in children classed as being without parental care, from 163,000 to 181,000 for the countries for which we have data (for four countries data for 2007 are estimated). The impact of becoming separated from one’s parents is greatest for infants and young children. It is therefore worrying that age-disaggregated data suggest that, in some countries, infants and young children are more likely to be left without parental care than older children, notably in Uzbekistan and Armenia (Table 3.1). Age-disaggregated data are therefore crucial for all indicators on children in the formal child care system, especially those in residential care. Figure 3.1 Children registered as being left without parental care during the year (0-17 years) 500 TFYR Macedonia Belarus Moldova Russian Federation 400 Rate per 100,000 children (0-17 years) Ukraine Armenia Azerbaijan Georgia 300 Kazakhstan Kyrgyzstan Turkmenistan 200 Uzbekistan 100 0 2000 2001 2002 2003 2004 2005 2006 2007 Note: Data for Russia and Ukraine include children who were not placed under care in the preceding year. Source: TransMONEE database 2009 Boys account for more than half of all children ‘without parental care’, with national estimates ranging from 53 to 59 per cent (Table 3.2). Further research is needed to improve our understanding of the causes of these gender differences. It could be that the absence of institutions specifically for girls may deter parents or other ‘duty-bearers’ from placing girls in institutions that are mixed. Our lack of understanding of the underlying differences between the situation of boys and girls supports the argument to systematically collect data disaggregated by both sex and age. Only through sub-group analyses can we gain insights into the many complex interactions between gender, age and the lack of parental care....12 AT h O M E O R I N A h O M E ?
  18. 18. Table 3.1 Age distribution of children officially registered as left without parental care during the year of 2007 Children left without parental care Rate per 100 000 relevant Absolute number Per cent of total population Moldova 0-7 years 757 34.7 253.2 8-17 years 1,425 65.3 268.2 Armenia 0-2 years 142 36.0 126.2 3-17 years 252 64.0 35.8 Kyrgyzstan 0-6 years 943 37.1 129.6 7-17 years 1,596 62.9 131.9 Uzbekistan 0-2 years 2,523 38.7 159.9 3-17 years 3,992 61.3 45.2Note: Data for Uzbekistan refer to 2006.Source: TransMONEE database 2009Table 3.2 Gender distribution: The percentage of boys and girls of all children officially registered as left without parental care during 2007. TFYR Russian Armenia Kyrgyzstan Uzbekistan Macedonia Federation Boys 61.0% 57.6% 54.7% 50.7% 54.0% Girls 39.0% 42.4% 45.3% 49.3% 46.0%Note: Data for Armenia and Uzbekistan refer to 2006.Source: TransMONEE database 2009 13...
  19. 19. 4. The rate of children in formal care is increasing Formal care refers to all children in residential care or family-based care (see Box 2.2 for definition). Many children in formal care may not have been officially recognised as being ‘without parental care’, but have nevertheless been placed in formal care by their parents for other reasons: for example, parents who are poor and in need of someone to look after their child during the day so they can work. As day-care facilities are not available in most CEE/CIS countries, residential care – boarding schools, children’s homes, or centres for children with disabilities – becomes the only option. In the CEE/CIS region the average number of children living in formal care is increasing. In 2007, there were 1,738 per 100,000 living in formal care – i.e. approximately 1.7 per cent of the child population – up from 1.5 per cent in 2000. There may be some indication of a levelling out since 2004, but more recent data are needed to assess whether this is a long-term trend. The increase in the rate of children in formal care applies to both residential care and family-based care (Figure 4.1). Patterns vary from country to country (Figure 4.2). Figure 4.1 Stock data: rate of children in formal care in CEE/CIS at the end of the year (0-17 years) 2000 Residential care Family-based care Rate per 100,000 children (0-17 years) 1500 788 831 793 824 743 879 641 694 1000 500 905 861 881 913 929 914 893 859 0 2000 2001 2002 2003 2004 2005 2006 2007 Note: Residential care: Data missing for Georgia for 2004-2007. For Croatia, Montenegro and Serbia where data were missing for 2001, 2003 and 2005 and 2007 averages were calculated for each missing year based on the previous/subsequent years. Data for Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan for 2007 are estimates. Family-based care: Data for the whole period are missing for Albania, Montenegro, Kazakhstan and Turkmenistan and for 2000-2004 for Bulgaria, Serbia and Tajikistan. The calculation of rates adjusts for missing data by excluding the appropriate population data. Source: TransMONEE database 2009 ‘Flow data’ describes the type of care in which children who have become separated from their families (in six countries in the region during the year) are being placed. (Table 4.1). The data suggest that the majority of children officially registered as being without parental care are being placed in family-based care or adopted, and a smaller proportion are entering residential care. This is positive news given the traditional heavy reliance on residential care in the region. However, these data may be misleading. As we will see later in the report, there is an increase in the proportion of children in formal care who are placed in family-based care. Combining this finding with the flow data above may lead us to conclude that those who benefit from new forms of family-based care are mainly ‘new entries’ to the system, while those who are already in residential care do so to a lesser extent. While the data in Table 4.1 may provide some insight into the dynamics of the formal care system, more comprehensive data are needed in order to understand the relative role of, and relationship between, residential care, alternative family-based care and adoption....14 AT h O M E O R I N A h O M E ?
  20. 20. Figure 4.2 Stock data: Rate of children in formal care in selected countries at the end of the year (0-17 years) 3500 Family-based care Residential care 3000 Rate per 100,000 children (0-17 years) 2500 1600 2000 996 778 1500 425 424 827 272 1000 348 240 710 311 1158 1215 1236 1265 1266 1101 500 871 205 102 874 756 732 206 238 655 437 252 176 184 0 1990 2000 2007 1991 2000 2007 1990 2000 2007 1990 2000 2006 1990 2000 2007 TFYR Macedonia Moldova Russian Federation Azerbaijan KyrgyzstanNote: Residential care: Data for Russia, Azerbaijan (for Kyrgyzstan for 2000 and 2007) include children living in general boarding schools.Data for Moldova for 2000 and 2007 include children in boarding schools and exclude Trans-Dniester.Family-based care: Data for Azerbaijan and Russia for 1990 refer to guardian care only.Data for Kyrgyzstan refer to guardian care only, guardians usually being grandparents or close relatives (about 80 per cent).Source: TransMONEE database 2009.Drawing broad conclusions about the relative role of residential versus family-based care using the datacollected through MONEE is difficult for a number of reasons. First, some children classified as entering‘guardianship care’ are actually living in their own extended family where the guardianship has been arranged,either by the parents or the child protection organ. The ‘guardian’, usually the grandmother, receives astipend for the child. These children, who are sometimes captured in the statistics as being in alternativefamily-based care, are in fact being cared for within their own biological family. Second, there is ‘within-system’ movement of children that needs to be closely examined, such as the movement of children fromfamily-based care to residential care or the adoption of children in residential care or in alternative family-based care. In fact, it is rare for a child to be adopted straight from his or her biological family without passingthrough the formal care system. Since existing data may be misleading, changes in the statistical designshould be considered for the future.Overall, data suggest that more children are in formal care today than at the beginning of the transition period.The increasing rates may be the result of weak or inexistent services and other measures to prevent familyseparation, and even if reforms have introduced alternative family-based care services, the latter have notnecessarily replaced the old residential care services. It is also questionable whether those children who werealready ‘users’ of residential care services have been the first ones to benefit from the introduction of newfamily-based care. Experience in the region shows that this is not the case and MONEE data confirm it. 15...
  21. 21. Table 4.1 Flow data: Placement of children without parental care whose parents have been deprived of their parental rights, by type, in 2000, 2005 and 2007 during the year. Absolute number Percentage of total 2000 2005 2007 2000 2005 2007 Russian Federation Number of children, placed into care 112,627 122,159 114,667 100.0 100.0 100.0 during the year, of which: Placed in child care institutions 36,215 40,824 29,797 32.2 33.4 26.0 Entered educational institutions 2,154 3,135 2,411 1.9 2.6 2.1 Entered guardian care 66,966 71,800 77,148 59.5 58.8 67.3 Were adopted 7,292 6,400 5,217 6.5 5.2 4.6 Belarus Number of children, placed into care 5,198 4,871 4,499 100.0 100.0 100.0 during the year, of which: Placed in child care institutions 2,229 1,516 1,206 42.9 31.1 26.8 Entered educational institutions 168 172 134 3.2 3.5 3.0 Entered guardian care 2,505 2,990 2,947 48.2 61.4 65.5 Were adopted 162 137 166 3.1 2.8 3.7 Other type of care 134 56 46 2.6 1.1 1.0 Moldova Number of children, placed into care 1,362 2,111 2,182 100.0 100.0 100.0 during the year, of which: Placed in child care institutions 199 497 548 14.6 23.5 25.1 Entered educational institutions 28 168 207 2.1 8.0 9.5 Entered guardian care 1,135 1,446 1,427 83.3 68.5 65.4 Azerbaijan Number of children, placed into care 1,027 898 932 100.0 100.0 100.0 during the year, of which: Placed in child care institutions 127 113 120 12.4 12.6 12.9 Entered educational institutions - 1 - - 0.1 - Entered guardian care or adopted 900 784 812 87.6 87.3 87.1 Armenia Number of children, placed into care - 80 106 - 100.0 100.0 during the year, of which: Placed in child care institutions - 26 6 - 32.5 5.7 Entered educational institutions - 8 15 - 10.0 14.1 Entered guardian/foster care - 44 82 - 55.0 77.4 Were adopted - 2 3 - 2.5 2.8 Uzbekistan Number of children, placed into care 6,387 7,347 6,516 100.0 100.0 100.0 during the year, of which: Placed in child care institutions 805 776 861 12.6 10.6 13.2 Entered educational institutions 15 76 27 0.2 1.0 0.4 Entered guardian/foster care 5,567 6,495 5,628 87.2 88.4 86.4 adopted Note: Data for Azerbaijan, Armenia and Uzbekistan for 2007 refer to 2006. Source: TransMONEE database 2009....16 AT h O M E O R I N A h O M E ?
  22. 22. 5. Poverty is not the only cause of separation, but an important oneGross Domestic Product (GDP) is one of the main indicators of a country’s potential for public spending.However, the way the money is spent will affect different population groups and will therefore contribute todisparities among them. In CEE/CIS we see that despite an increase in the GDP of many countries betweenthe years 2000 and 2007, large numbers of children are still experiencing poverty and deprivation. Researchhas clearly shown that children have not benefited from the economic recovery in the early and mid 2000sas much as other sectors of the population, and that child poverty is becoming increasingly concentratedin certain groups and geographical areas 8. At the regional level, rates of formal care have not come downdespite the increase in GDP (Fig. 5.1).Figure 5.1 Rates of children in formal care (0-17 years) and GDP per capita in the CEE/CIS Region. Formal care GDP 2000 10,000 GDP per capita PPP (current international $) Rate per 100,000 children (0-17 years) 8,000 1500 6,000 1000 4,000 500 2,000 0 0 2000 2001 2002 2003 2004 2005 2006 2007Source: TransMONEE database 2009Family poverty is often quoted as a key factor in a family’s decision to place their children in formal careeither in the short or the long-term. However, experiences in the region show that this is not the only factor.Often families are simply seeking day-care services or educational facilities in their localities, and when theyfind such services are unavailable they opt to send their children to boarding schools or other institutions.This is particularly true of parents of children with disabilities. Single mothers are also especially vulnerableand may decide to place their children in care in order to keep their job, believing perhaps that one day theycan be reunited with their child. In such cases, economic problems may be quoted as the main reason forinstitutionalization, but the lack of measures to enable parents to reconcile family life and professional lifeis the root cause. Migration is another factor. Increasingly, parents are migrating for work and leaving theirchildren behind. In Moldova, for example, the child care system is under pressure to either place the childrenleft behind in institutions or to financially support those looking after the child – for example grandparentsor even neighbours.In other cases, court decisions deprive children of parental care. The parents can be deemed incapable oflooking after the child for a variety of reasons including illness and alcohol abuse.8 UNICEF Innocenti Social Monitor 2006: Understanding Child Poverty in South-Eastern Europe and the Commonwealth of Independent States. , Florence: UNICEF Innocenti Research Centre, 2006. 17...
  23. 23. Depending on national legislation, a court usually takes children away from their parents as a last resort, when for example the parents do not, or cannot, carry out their duties, or if remaining with them will threaten the health or life of the children. In some countries a distinction is made between full or partial deprivation. Occasionally parents may be able to resume their rights at a later stage, but often the measure is permanent because there is little done to help parents overcome their difficulties once a partial deprivation has been imposed. Introducing such support on a systematic basis in cases of partial deprivation of parental rights should be a priority towards reducing the rates of full deprivation. In the Russian Federation, deprivation of parental rights is the principal cause of children being placed in residential care. And the number of families whose parents are deprived of their parental rights is growing. In the past 14 years (1993-2007), the number of deprivations of parental rights increased nearly four-fold (from 20,649 in 1993 to 76,310 in 2007). Such a growth rate is an alarming signal that proves the need for creating the family preventive assistance system.9 Family poverty is a contributing factor but rarely the sole cause of children being without parental care. There are several non-economic factors that determine whether a family can continue to support and protect their children when they face problems. These factors are social, cultural, and rooted in the organization of the child protection system. Cultural factors, such as a traditional reliance on extended families for child care are important considerations. Consider, for example, Kazakhstan and Tajikistan in Central Asia. Kazakhstan has low child poverty but high rates of formal care, while Tajikistan has significantly higher levels of child poverty in comparison with Kazakhstan but lower levels of formal care. When Tajik families place their children in residential care, it is usually not due to poverty – as noted in a recent study (referring to a micro-credit programme): “… the families not only were unwilling to take on loans they felt they might be unable to repay, but also often had motivations other than purely economic ones for committing their children to residential care which were not resolved by the micro-credit and training programme” (Oxford Policy Management and UNICEF 2008) Generally in Eastern Europe and Central Asia, early identification of risk and timely interventions are often missing. Thus, when a family breaks down, children may end up running away, or are abandoned or placed in care on a temporary or a long-term basis. In summary, there are many factors that contribute to children becoming separated from their families. These factors are economic and non-economic, and their relevance depends on the country and local context. It also depends on a causal chain, which in one family may result in a request for placement in formal care, but in another result in a child dropping out of school and/or entering into child labour. The child care system needs to change and provide a combination of services and other measures including cash transfers for basic services and items for vulnerable families. A continuum of services, from preventative to curative, needs to be developed based on state organs’ individual case assessments. They would decide on child entitlements and regularly review the case of each child. Qualitative research on the root causes of the problem is crucial to inform policy-makers and enable them to make appropriate and effective decisions. Cost–benefit analysis and financial forecasting should also provide a ground for prioritising services in a way which can benefit more children at the appropriate time, instead of resorting to the solutions which are both damaging to children and create a huge burden on public expenditure. 9 UNICEF and the Institute for Urban Economics (2008) Draft Report for the Child Care Consultation in the Russian Federation....18 AT h O M E O R I N A h O M E ?
  24. 24. Box 5.1 Residential care: what is it? “I like the room here at the institution, but I like my home better. I go home only during the holidays. I miss my relatives…” , says a child in a residential home. The traditional residential institutions in CEE/CIS have large buildings which house 100-300 children. The services and the way the rooms are set out do not respect children’s rights: for example the right to privacy, a healthy environment, and the right to play and be educated. By contrast, the ‘family type model’ is characterised by small houses or apartments and a limited number of children: fewer than ten. Finally, in the CEE/CIS region, there is the so-called ‘mixed type’ of residential care, which refers to institutions where the two previous models co-exist, taking the form of several family-type houses or apartments clustered within the same setting. Research spanning decades has shown how, even for a short time, residential care can be damaging to children’s development 10, particularly in early childhood. Adverse physical effects include poor health, physical underdevelopment, hearing and vision problems, and delay in the development of motor, speech and cognitive skills. In addition, children living in institutions, especially in large ones, often suffer psychologically and emotionally. They have few, if any, opportunities to develop a stable, permanent, positive and loving relationship with an adult -- an attachment which is vital for their growth and development. Furthermore, the common practice of transferring children from one institution to another just for the convenience of managing a fragmented system further disrupts any relationships with peers and carers in the institutions. Attachment disorder is a condition resulting from this lack of opportunity to form attachments, unusual early experiences of neglect, abuse, abrupt separation from caregivers, or lack of caregiver responsiveness to a child’s efforts to form a close relationship. The impact is greatest for children aged between six months and three years, and may result in problem behaviour. Separation from, or loss of a primary caregiver where they have existed in a child’s life, has also been linked to mental health problems such as anxiety, anger, depression and emotional detachment. We also know that the negative impact of institutionalization worsens if the children do not have necessary support when they finally leave; they often need help to find a place to live or ways to earn a living. There will always be a small group of children in need of out-of-home care, and for which family-based care is not the most appropriate option. Thus, there is a growing consensus among child protection experts that small-scale residential care, in the form of small group homes in family-like environments, and used as a temporary or at times last resort, may sometimes be in the best interests of the child. This may be the case for example of older children or children with very severe forms of disability. It may also be in some adolescents’ best interests to live independently, and they should be given that option with proper support. High-quality temporary and emergency shelters and different types of foster care have an important role to play in child protection and social welfare. Such institutions or ‘temporary shelters’ or emergency foster families can provide short-term accommodation and protection for children who, for whatever reason, have no home they can safely return to – including children who are homeless, who have suffered abuse, who are involved in the worst forms of child labour and/or have been trafficked – while a longer term care plan is established. However, all care options – institutional or otherwise – should be time-bound and accompanied by an individualised care plan.10 Bowlby J (1951) Maternal care and mental health. Geneva: World Health Organization; Carter R (2005) Family Matters. A study of institutional child care in Central and Eastern Europe and the former Soviet Union. EveryChild; Fisher L, Ames E, Chisholm K, Savoie L(1997) Problems reported by parents of Romanian orphans adopted to British Columbia. Int J Behav Dev 20:67-82; Johnson R, Browne K., Hamilton-Giachritsis C (2006) Young children in institutional care at risk of harm. Trauma Violence and Abuse 7(1): 1–26; O’Connor TG, Rutter M, Beckett C, Keaveney L, Kreppner J, the English and Romanian Adoptees Study Team (2000). The effects of global severe privation on cognitive competence: extension and longitudinal follow-up. Child Dev 71:376-90; O’Kane C, Moedlagl C, Verweijen-Slamnescu R, Winkler E (2006) Child rights situation analysis: rights-based situational analysis of children without parental care and at risk of losing their parental care: global literature scan. SOS-Kinderdorf International; Rutter M, the English and Romanian Adoptees Study Team (1998). Developmental catch-up, and deficit, following adoption after severe global early privation. J Child Psychol Psychiatry 39:465-76; Sloutsky, V (1997). Institutional care and developmental outcomes of 6- and 7-year-old children: A contextualist perspective. International Journal of Behavioral Development 20(1) 131-151. UNICEF Innocenti Research Centre (1997) Children at risk in Central and Eastern Europe: Perils and Promises. Regional Monitoring Report 4 19...
  25. 25. 6. The hidden increase of residential care in most countries The term ‘residential care’ is used to describe a collective living arrangement where children are looked after by adults who are paid to undertake this function. See Box 5.1 for more on the nature of residential care as well as the well known negative impact it has on children’s health and development, especially those under three years of age. An analysis of trends suggests that the total number of children in residential care in CEE/CIS has fallen between 2000 and 2007, from 757,000 to 626,000 children.11 However, as the birth rate in the region has also dropped dramatically, the numbers are less encouraging than they may seem (Figure 6.1). A more appropriate and realistic picture is presented with the use of ‘rates,’ accounting for the impact of demographic change. Figure 6.1 Stock data: the number and rate of children in residential care in CEE/CIS (0-17 years) Number of children (in 1000s) or rate of children (per 100,000) 1000 800 600 400 200 Number of children (in 1000s) Rate of children (per 100,000) 0 1989 1990 1991 1992 1993 1994 1995 1996 1997 1998 1999 2000 2001 2002 2003 2004 2005 2006 2007 Note: The increase in absolute numbers in 2000 can partly be explained by data availability and coverage: due to the changes in child protection systems, data for Bulgaria and Romania for the period 2000-2007 differ from earlier years; data on Albania are available since 1998, for Bosnia and Herzegovina since 1999 and for Serbia and Montenegro since 2000; data since 2000 include Kazakhstan; for Tajikistan data include boarding schools since 2002. For Croatia (period 1989-2007), Montenegro and Serbia (period 2000-2007) where data were missing (data are collected every second year) averages were calculated for each missing year based on the previous/subsequent years. Number of children in residential care for 1989 for Bulgaria, Romania, Armenia, Kyrgyzstan and for 2007 for Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan are estimates. The population data used to calculate rates were adjusted according to availability of data on absolute numbers. Source: TransMONEE database 2009 The rate of children in institutional care in CEE/CIS (stock data) has on average been almost stagnant since 2000, following a longer-term upward trend since the early 1990s. We estimate that 859 children per 100,000 were living in residential care in 2007, which is about the same as the 2000 rate (861). The regional averages hide important differences between countries. A closer look reveals that in 12 countries the rate of children in institutional care increased between 2000 and 2007, while in 8 countries it decreased (Table 6.1). This means that despite ongoing reforms, residential care is becoming more frequent in more than half the countries. It is useful to draw some tentative conclusions about the differences between sub-regions in residential care – ‘tentative’ because of known differences between countries in their method of collecting data on children in residential care. The data presented in Figure 6.2 suggest that residential care is substantially more common in Western CIS than in any other sub-region. Although in Belarus and the Russian Federation the rate of children classified as living in residential care has remained high in recent years, it is worrying that the already high rates in Moldova are rising even more from 1,158 to 1,215 per 100,000 children between 2000 and 2007. 11 TransMonee data: data missing for Tajikistan 2000....20 AT h O M E O R I N A h O M E ?

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